Project: View Ridge House
Architecture: Heliotrope Architects
Landscape: Nussbaum Group
Location: Seattle, Washington
Photography: Haris Kenjar, Sean Airhart
Text by Heliotrope Architects
Located on an eastern sloping parcel above Lake Washington, our primary design directive was to capture abundant lake and mountain views – taking into consideration possible future down-slope home construction with potential to impede the view.
The design solution of View Ridge House places living spaces on the top floor, guaranteeing the view in perpetuity, and shifts the upper and lower level floor-plans in order to create a roof terrace off of the living and dining spaces. Garage and support spaces are placed below-grade, with a high floor-to-floor height that places the entry flush with grade at the high portion of the site. A 15ft grade change from sidewalk to front door is mitigated by generous, shifting stairs punctuated by a garden space and gateway that transitions you from the public to the private realm.
Significant existing trees and shrubs were leveraged in the design, creating a rich entry experience and a strong connection to the landscape from the upper floor. The three-story stair wraps around an elevator, allowing for ageing in place. A den space is located a bit below grade, opening onto a sunken terrace in the back yard with a fire-pit for outdoor lounging in a more sheltered environment than the top floor deck.